Wednesday, March 31, 2010

After Dark Horrorfest 4: The Graves (Review)

As I mentioned before, I'm reviewing all the After Dark Horrorfest 4 movies on UGO.com. I've made up a hub for all my reviews. Keep checking back as it will be updated once the reviews go live on UGO.com.

Here's a little excerpt from my review of The Graves.

"How could a movie that consisted of hot girls in tank tops with bouncy cleavage and two horror titans, Bill Moseley and Tony Todd end up a worthless pile of crap?

The Graves is completely clichéd, annoying, repetitive and cheesy. And that's me being nice.
"

Read the rest of the review by heading to UGO.com.

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Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Please Subscribe (Trailer)

Stepping away from the horror universe for a sec, I wanted to post up the trailer for the documentary, Please Subscribe directed by CJ Wallis and the Soska Sisters. Yes, these are the same Soska Sisters who directed Dead Hooker in a Trunk and that evil short Bad Girls.

Here they do a 180 and go into the documentary world and profile the world of the YouTube celebrity. Included in this doc are:
  • Happy Slip
  • David Choi
  • DaxFlame
  • Tay Zonday
C'mon, you know who all of these people are right? Happy Slip's Christine Gambito is my favorite and its interesting to realize how easy it is to be come a YouTube sensation if you spark a niche cult following.

I really am stunned by how everybody has extended their 15 minutes in this Interweb era. You really can't disappear if you've got 1 follower or a million followers. Somebody will keep you relevant.

Everybody wants to be famous in some sense (hell which is why we all blog right?) But these 4 seem to have extended their 15 to years now. Do you hate these people? Do you love em? What do you think of the Internet/YouTube celeb phenomenon?

In any case, check out the trailer below.





Head over to the official site for more info.

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No Right Turn (DVD Release)

I reviewed this indie masterpiece from Denmark last year. David Noel Bourke's No Right Turn is best described my quoted quotable:

"I've never seen anybody blend pulp crimeyness, film noir and fantasy all together! The fantastical twist in a pulp fiction cocktail is completely different from anything I've seen before. And that's the beauty of independent film."

Well now you get a chance to witness this pulp crimeyness for yourself. It's been recently released on Region 2 DVD in Europe. So for my fellow jaded European fans, this is for you.

For America and Canada, it should be on Netflix and Blockbuster. Definitely check it out.

Here's some sites to check out.

Official site: http://www.lastexitproductions.dk/NoRightTurn.html
Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/pages/No-Right-Turn/35412272352

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Monday, March 29, 2010

Mirageman (Review)

Mirageman

Mirageman (2007)

Directed by Ernesto Diaz Espinoza

[this review is brought to you by Insano Steve, who after seeing this flick, got dressed up as superhero and started roaming the streets of NYC where he met a gang of thugs who kicked his ass, he should have seen Kick-Ass first]

I was pretty psyched to see Mirage Man because of it's no nonsense action packed trailer. Our hero, Mirage Man is just a regular dude who fights crime without any of the usual frills. He has no superpowers, just his fists and his guts (and a blue ski mask!).

Plus, this is the first movie I'd ever seen from Chile. So does Mirage Man deliver? Well, kinda, .....

Boring Plot-O-Matic

Maco, a young man orphaned after his parents and surviving younger brother were brutally attacked, lives a solitary life as a nightclub security guard. One day, he intervenes in a violent robbery, rescuing a television reporter, who later reports on her masked hero. Hearing of this new superhero, Maco s institutionalized brother s mental health improves. Encouraged by this improvement, Maco takes on the secret life of the superhero known as MIRAGEMAN.

Awesome Review-O-Matic

Plot: In the prologue, we find out that our hero, Marco and his brother, Tito, were orphaned as children when their parents were killed in a home invasion. Tito was particularly scarred because he was also raped(!) during the invasion.

One day, Marco, is walking home from his job as a bouncer, when lo and behold, he spots a home invasion taking place. Marco beats up one of the masked invaders, takes his mask from him, and becomes the Mirage Man! MM ends up beating the shit out of the other invaders inside the house, one of whom is in the middle of raping a girl. What's up with all the rape?

Turns out the girl that is saved from rape is local TV news reporter, Carol Valdivieso, who broadcasts her heroic story on the news the next day. Mirage Man is now famous and citizens throughout Chile begin to call out for our hero to help protect them from crime.

The movie becomes sorta standard after this. Hero is loved, Hero is taken for granted, Hero is betrayed, Hero is hated, Hero says 'fuck this, I quit', Hero returns when the city goes to shit, Hero is loved again.

T&A: Nothing that I can remember

Gore: Negative here as well

WTF Moment: On one of Mirage Man's missions, he fights what the DVD subtitles calls a 'gang of rappers'. However, the gang is nothing more than a bunch of low end thugs. Apparently, the Chileans have somehow equated 'rapper' with 'criminal'. I have no idea how they made that association.

Insano Steve's Final Verdict: There's some fine moments in this flick and it's certainly an easy watch. At the same time, it's not gonna be anything you haven't seen before. The trend of the 'alternative' superhero has kinda taken over now. I did appreciate the shitty 70s quality and feel of the movie. And also, it's nice to finally have a Chilean stereotype in case I ever meet a Chilean person!


Rating:
1/2

Check out the trailer.



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Friday, March 26, 2010

After Dark Horrorfest 4: Zombies of Mass Destruction (Review)

As I mentioned before, I'm reviewing all the After Dark Horrorfest 4 movies on UGO.com. I've made up a hub for all my reviews. Keep checking back as it will be updated once the reviews go live on UGO.com.

Here's a little excerpt from my review of Zombies of Mass Destruction.

"The zom com has been riding a high of late. Gone is your traditional slow moving scare em shoot em up zombie horror. It's been replaced by parodying self aware zombie comedies of late. So Zombies of Mass Destruction enters the fray into this subgenre. Is it as good as the Zombieland or Shaun of the Dead?

C'mon now. Of course not. But it's a damn fun ride."


Read the rest of the review by heading to UGO.com.

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After Dark Horrorfest 4: The Final (Review)

As I mentioned before, I'm reviewing all the After Dark Horrorfest 4 movies on UGO.com. I've made up a hub for all my reviews. Keep checking back as it will be updated once the reviews go live on UGO.com.

Here's a little excerpt from my review of The Final.

"The best way to describe The Final is its Saw 90210. In a typical suburban high school, a group of self aware misfits and outcasted teens devise a plan (based on horror movies, oh how self aware!) to take revenge on the jocks, popular douchbags and mean girls. Inviting them to a costume party, the partygoers are drugged and when they wake up are cuffed and chained together. Suffice it say, our teen outcasts are gonna get medieval"

Read the rest of the review by heading to UGO.com.

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After Dark Horrorfest 4: Killing Theory (Review)

As I mentioned before, I'm reviewing all the After Dark Horrorfest 4 movies on UGO.com. I've made up a hub for all my reviews. Keep checking back as it will be updated once the reviews go live on UGO.com.

Here's a little excerpt from my review of Kill Theory.

"Kill Theory is not great but compared to the others, it's pretty solid. The premise is an intriguing one. The movie poses the question: What would you do to survive if given the choice to either kill your friends in order to live. The answer plays out as slightly cliched and is executed in the most extreme way possible. And somehow it came out five by five."

Read the rest of the review by heading to UGO.com.

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Thursday, March 25, 2010

Karl the Butcher is back! (Violent Shit 4 Trailer)

If this is the first time you've heard the name Andreas Schnaas, well I'm here to educate you my gorehound minions. Schnaas is the director of the infamous Violent Shit Trilogy. Let me take you to a time when horror bootleg VHS tapes at horror conventions were the norm and 3 German directors redefined the low budget splatter film.

With Schnaas was Jorg Buttgereit (Nekromantik and Nekromantik 2) and Olaf Ittenbach (Premutos, Burning Moon). The only way to see their films was to trade on the internet or go to a horror fest and buy a badly dubbed VHS copy. These 3 left their mark in the gorehound hall of fame. Mind you their movies had no plot, their films badly subtitled and had no budget, but that was made up for in the buckets of blood, gore and guts they put on the screen.

So Schnaas who last made a Troma distributed film called Nikos the Impaler is back to his roots with Violent Shit 4.0: Karl the Butcher vs Axe. Who the fuck is Axe? I have no idea but from the trailer I noticed a few things:
  • NYC seems kinda apocalypticized
  • Egypt too
  • Umm lots of people are kinda dead
  • Metal Masks from 1989 look the same in 2010
  • Karl knows kung fu?!?!
  • Gratuitous nudity!
  • Arterial spraying! (looks like Schnaas got $5 extra dollars this time around)
  • Karl is gonna knock some heads this time around (PUN SO INTENDED!)
Check out the trailer below. Thanks to Cinema Suicide and The Horror Geek for the heads up.





Here are my mini reviews of all three movies for the record. I wrote these circa 2002.

1.) Violent Shit

Andreas Schnaas is a cult horror icon throughout the underground horror community. Everybody has heard of the Violent Shit Trilogy. Holy splatter and guts Batman! This is utter torture in the worse way.

Shot on video trash, VS is an exercise of guerrilla film making. A plot is non existent, but Karl the Butcher, our delusional and insane serial killer armed with a butcher's knife goes frolicking around the back, waaaay back German woods hacking up victims who just happen to be there.

The gore is very artificial but in a comical sorta way. Arms get cut off, heads get beheaded, intestines fall out, victims get cut in 2. It's a total ripoff of FT13th but Karl the Butcher has its moments and Violent Shit is fuckin violent shit.

2.) Violent Shit 2: Mother Hold My Hand

The best movie of the trilogy. Looky here! An opening title sequence. Classic splatter. No holds barred dismemberment's, intestines, yada yada yada.

3.) Violent Shit 3: Infantry of Doom AKA Zombie Doom

We conclude with Zombie Doom. Schnaas, you would have hoped by now would have had a budget to make a decent flick but alas he tries to intermix some American movies he must have seen (bad move Andreas!) and add some goofy humor.

Basic plot: Karl Sr and Jr. are reunited and have started a cult. Members train and of course if fail are unfortunately dismembered and killed. A former member (let's call him Chinese guy) and 2 castaways land who unfortunately land on the wrong island must survive Karl Jr's game...humans are hunted for sport. (you so original Schnaas!)

Cult members die, splatter galore, dismemberment's, disfigurements, tit impaling, head impaling, gutted stomachs. You got the picture? A little letdown from Part 2 but it's got the goodies.

So what do you all think?

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Wednesday, March 24, 2010

A Day in the Life (Review)

A Day in the Life

A Day in the Life (2007)

Directed by Sticky Fingaz

[This review brought to you by Insano Steve, who while watching this movie gunned down 3 innocent bystanders]


One day while mindlessly browsing the YouTubes, I stumbled upon the trailer for "A Day in the Life". Little did I know, I had just discovered the best black movie in at least the last 10 years.

As a self-proclaimed expert in the modern blaxploitation genre, I had largely given up on the modern black film. Apparently, I just wasn't looking hard enough. While mainstream audiences have had enough of gangstas shooting each other dead in the streets for the sake of a soundtrack, the direct to video/download markets are still alive and well.

Boring Plot-O-Matic

A Day in the Life is a Hip Hop, action-drama, musical film. The film begins as the sun rises, it's just another day in the life of Sticky's character and concludes before sunset of the same day.

The story takes the audience on a wild journey through one day as witnesses to an intense street war between two rival crime families.

Awesome Review-O-Matic

Onyx:
The producer and main star of 'A Day In The Life' is Sticky Fingaz from the famous rap group, Onyx. Onyx was a rap group from the rape and murder filled streets of Queens, NY. They first reached fame in the early 1990s with the hit single "Slam".

At the peak of their of popularity, there were over 850 members of Onyx in the wild. Although, only 2 or 3 of them actually rapped. The only requirements for membership were to be:
  1. black
  2. bald
  3. angry
Later on, the hair and racial requirements would be lifted.

Unfortunately, by the year 2000, deforestation and erosion would slowly dwindle the Onyx population until only the 2 main members remained, Sticky Fingaz and Fredro Starr. With no space in the music marketplace left for angry blacks, the Onyx had no choice but to adapt and embrace the film media. In "A Day in the Life", they were the first to make a film where the dialogue is entirely in rap! Yup, the whole 90 minutes are rapped!

Plot: Sticky Fingaz (played by Sticky Fingaz), is a gangsta that’s been robbed by the guy who played Big Worm in ‘Friday’. So, Sticky and his boy, Fredro, vow revenge and many many many bruthas end up dead in the process.

In fact, more bruthas die just in this movie’s trailer than in even some my favorite blaxploitations! And these murders are fucking brutal. Lots of bloody white Tshirts yo!

Rap:
Oh shit. When I heard all the dialogue was rap, I just couldn’t see how it could be done. But damn, Sticky really did it here. To make all the dialogue work in terms of the plot (no matter how negligible) and still sound good as a rhyme, this really is genius.

One of my personal highlights were: Sticky and Fredro rapping over a cellphone, and the bad phone signal serving the role of a record scratching. Also, everybody in the movie raps. Not just gangstas. The cops rap, old people rap, white people rap, they all rap. And with the miracle of Auto-Tune, it all sounds good!

Rappers/Name Dropping:
Damn near everybody you can think of is in this shit. Best rap performance by an actor goes to:
  • Omar Epps (who wrote his own rhymes)
  • Michael Rappaport as he often does, plays the good cop (aka, the only white guy in the movie).
  • Back from the dead, ‘Caine’ from Menace II Society plays Rappaport’s corrupt partner/the bad cop.
  • Mekhi Phifer and Bookeem Woodbine provide some acting credibility to the movie.
  • Omar and Wee-Bey from ‘The Wire’ are in this, playing pretty much their same characters.
  • Treach, of OPP fame, plays Sticky’s personal arms dealer.
  • Even Ray J, who’s not actually famous, has a tragic/funny cameo.
Who knew Sticky friends with so many people? Cause there’s no way he paid them.

T&A: Good amount of booty shaking. At least one scene of simulated sex and bare breasts. All females in the film are either bitches or hos. Now, that’s blaxploitation!

Gore: Lots and lots of gunshot fatalities (the best of which is done execution style). Also, a guy gets stabbed in the neck with scissors. Oh yeah, and one case of vehicular infanticide!

WTF Moment: Fredro is shot in the chest at close range multiple times, which sends him to intensive care. Later that day (yes, same day, remember the name of the film), Fredro checks himself out of the hospital, having recovered enough to his satisfaction.

Perhaps, the bullets bounced off some bullets that had already been lodged in his chest from a previous attack?

Anyhow, upon his release, having not shot anybody in several hours, Fredro, unprovoked, unloads his gun on one of his friends who has come pick him up at the hospital. Why!?!? I don’t think anybody will ever know, but I definitely appreciated this senseless violent act.

Insano Steve's Final Prognosis: See this fucking movie. At least, for novelty sake. I mean this film has singlehandedly reaffirmed my faith in modern black cinema.

I had once been lost and confused. Searching for something to fill the emptiness in my soul that was once filled with rap and gang violence.

But now, I can say, once again, I am whole. Yes, I have found my savior. And my savior’s name is Sticky Fingaz, ……

Alternate Rating: 4 YEARS, NO PAROLE!

Rating:

Check out the long ass trailer.





Check out the shorty trailer homey.



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Tuesday, March 23, 2010

After Dark Horrorfest IV (Reviews)

Last year I saw 7 of the 8 films c/o of UGO.com who asked me to review them all. Well this year they asked me to do it again and I squeamishly obliged. The last few movies I've seen via After Dark were mediocre at best. I even had a horrible time watching Perkins 14 at the theater. I gotta admit I enjoyed making fun of the films but that can only go so far. I really wanted to see some good films this year.

One can hope.

So this be the database for all my reviews for After Dark Horrorfest 4. I'll post a link for each movie review that heads over to UGO.com. Most of these reviews are short (350 words or less). It's not my usual style to use letter grades and not use serious amounts of profanity but they all have that quirky dialogue you're all use to if your a frequent visitor to the jaded viewer.

I'll post each review preview on the blog as well me thinks. Well that's enough yapping, click on a link below to review!
All the trailers can be found here in case you want to take a look. Please leave a comment on UGO and let me know what you thought as well.

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Monday, March 22, 2010

Dead Hooker in a Trunk (Review)

Dead Hooker in a Trunk

Dead Hooker in a Trunk (2009)

Directed by Jen and Sylvia Soska

Sometimes I put a trailer up and hype up an indie film and then what happens is I actually never get to see the film. But when I put up the trailer for Dead Hooker in a Trunk I actually got a comment from the filmmakers themselves. It was a first and totally threw me in a loop.

They even blogged about my initial thoughts which was super duper cool. Because of this little bit of acknowledgment from indie filmmaker to indie blog I kept the Soska Sisters on my personal radar. When they released a little short called Bad Girls, I posted it immediately.

So when the movie was making the rounds in festivals I contacted them immediately for a screener so I could expand my thoughts. Which leads us to this review. I sometimes hype up a movie in my head and it gets the best of me. Would Dead Hooker in a Trunk live up to its awesome title?

Oh most fuckin definitely.

DHIAT is a modern day black comedy exploitation film of pulpy goodness. As the title suggests, shit hits the fan when our troupe of twin sisters, a Jesus freak and a junkie find a dead hooker in a trunk. It starts off a chain reaction of ass kicking, appendages being ripped apart, some sexual molesting and a bloody bloodbath.

The Soska Sisters first feature film is raw in that grindhouse way and has that Tarantino feel with a extra dose of indie grittiness. You'll laugh, you'll wince, you'll metal head bob your head due to the awesome soundtrack. It's a fun time when you find a dead hooker in a trunk. I wish that happened everyday!

Boring Plot-O-Matic

Set in beautiful Vancouver, four friends set out on an everyday errand and end up in a fight for their lives when they discover the body of a dead hooker left in their trunk. Lead by a sexy, impulsive Badass, her distant Geek twin sister, their bible thumping, Jesus loving Goody Two Shoes friend, and a chaotic, rock star Junkie pal, the group has to put aside their differences to dispose of the body before they're next.

Thrown into their own personal purgatory, they face off against persistent police, a sleazy motel manager, chainsaw wielding triads, and a brutal serial killer. All the while they are followed by a mysterious Cowboy Pimp who wants to claim the corpse for his own. Will they uncover the truth behind the body and be able to stand up to their demons?

Buckle up and get ready for the ride of your life filled with gun fights, extreme violence, blood, guts, gore, and goats. Dead Hooker In A Trunk is the unexpected first feature film written, directed, and produced by identical twin sisters, Jen and Sylvia Soska. The two newcomers created an impossible film that is an underground sensation, destined to become a cult classic and will make you fall in love with films again!

Awesome Review-O-Matic

Badass (Sylvia Soska) and Geek (Jen Soska) are twin sisters who work the opposite twin thing to a tee. Badass is exactly that, a bad fuckin ass. Geek is at the end of the rainbow, clean and nerdy. After Badass parties up with Junkie (Rikki Gagne), they pick up Goody Two Shoes (CJ Walls) Geek's Jesus lovin friend. The only place this movie could go is to the title.

And at about 16 minutes that's when it comes. Dead hooker in a trunk. Soon our foursome are tasked with disposing of said dead hooker. In a way it reminded me of when Jules and Vincent had the task of cleaning up their mess in Pulp Fiction. It's not easy to get rid of a body.

The relationships between the sisters is comic-ly timed. Jen and Sylvia are comfortable playing off each other and though its been done before, they do it in a new horror and suicide girls sort of way. Mixing in their hotness with some ridiculousness the movie plays out their relationship nicely.

Goody is pure comedy and CJ Walls is hilarious as the vomit prone God freak. Gagne as Junkie plays crackhead trauma nicely (and at one point loses her arm).

Avoiding getting caught by the police, they travel from motel to junkie den and end up in a penultimate shootout where Badass annihilates a drug infiltrating Triad gang. For an indie film, the effects were top notch. Oozing intestines, top notch gunshots to the head and blood spraying trauma are in full effect. I was pleasantly surprised by the insanity of it all. Our misfits though are not immune by the violence and are too violated with chainsawed arms and ocular trauma. The gore and splatter levels were off the chart.

It's absurdly insane, logic thrown out the window but that's the fun of it all.

Later, the killer of our dead hooker seeks revenge and trauma is inflicted by the four on a few baddies which leads to the twisty twizzler ending. A few gripes I'll admit I had about the film were a few flat jokes, some misplaced scenes and a flashback explaining the motives of the killer that ended up towards the end of the movie.

Other than that, DHIAT is five by five.

The Soska Sisters made a film they wanted to make and they ventured out and did it. It's a testament to them and their crew and is the true spirit of indie filmmaking. You have to love the tenacity of these two to make a film this ambitious. Nothing feels amateurish or low budget. It feels like a film made for me and my brethren who love grindhouse black comedies.

DHIAT is a mad mad bizzaro movie that has everything you would want. Hot kick ass girls, some ha ha's and LOLs and one killer soundtrack. I've got the Soska Sisters on my radar, it's time the rest of the world has them on theirs.

Gore-ipedia

Gunshots to the head
Arm trauma
Ocular trauma
Intestine oozing
Pyrocide
Snapped necks

Nude-ipedia

We get one twin almost...I said almost!

WTF moment

That ocular trauma came out of nowhere

The Jaded Viewer's Final Prognosis

I'm not sure of a DVD release but the Soska Sisters just finished screening the film at some festivals. If your a movie/horror blogger, hit them up for a possible screener on Twitter @twisted_twins.

Also check out their blog and the official site.

When I saw the trailer, I wrote:

"What's not to love about junkies, bad asses, hot women and a dead hooker in a trunk?"

It's still dead on true. What's not to love? If you want to sit back, smoke some weed and see a fun fun fun fun film, Dead Hooker in a Trunk is the film for you. It's a cult classic in waiting and a hidden gem in indie filmmaking.

Rating:


The Trailer


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Friday, March 19, 2010

Kick-Ass (Review)

Kick-Ass

Kick-Ass (2010)

Directed by Matthew Vaughn

"With no power comes no responsibility"

-Kick-Ass

I had the super duper lucky opportunity to see Kick Ass early thanks to a UGO.com/Lions Gate screening for the NYC premiere of Kick Ass. Not only did I get to see the best superhero/comic book movie since The Dark Knight or Iron Man (take your pick), but Mark Millar and John Romita Jr., the writer and artist of the comic were also in attendance to do an awesome Q&A.

I'll get to the fun facts of that Q&A at the end of this review, but now here comes the fun part. I get to have a full frontal superhero orgasm for all of you.

This is one of the best movies of 2010.

Kick Ass kicks so much fuckin ass, I wanted to put on some spandex, fight crime and spew witty vulgarities with my 11 yr old female cousin dressed as Hit Girl. Which brings us to why Kick Ass is awesome-tastic.

It's not the titular character that blows you away (though he does have his hilarious moments) but it's Hit Girl, the potty mouth pre-pubescent tween daughter of Big Daddy (Nic Cage doing his best Adam West impersonation) that steals the show. Chloe Moretz is so fantastic as Hit Girl you sincerely believe she loves ice cream sundaes and switchblades and can assassinate an army of mafiosos with a blink of an eye. (FYI: Moretz will star as Abby the vampire in Let Me In, the American remake of Let the Right One In)

Never has a little girl been so lethal with guns, yo yo string MacGyver devices and a blade.

Let's kick some ass with this review. SOME MILD SPOILERS BELOW.

Boring Plot-O-Matic

Adapted from Mark Millar's hyper-violent comic book of the same name, director Matthew Vaughn (Layer Cake)'s vigilante superhero film tells the tale of an average New York teenager who decides to don a costume and fight crime. Comic book geek Dave Lizewski (Aaron Johnson) may not have good coordination or special powers, but that doesn't mean he isn't a fully-capable crime fighter. After purchasing a flashy wet-suit on the internet, Dave starts busting up baddies with nothing but brute force. He calls himself Kick-Ass, and he can take a beating as good as he can dish one out.

Before long, Kick-Ass has become a local sensation, and others are following his lead. Big Daddy (Nicolas Cage) and Hit-Girl (Chloe Moritz) are a father-daughter crime-fighting duo who have set their sights on local mob heavy Frank D'Amico (Mark Strong). They're doing a decent job of dismantling Frank's sizable underworld empire when Kick-Ass gets drawn into the fray. But Frank's men play rough, and his son Chris (Christopher Mintz-Plasse) is about to become Kick-Ass' very first arch nemesis.

When Chris assumes the persona of Red Mist, the stage is set for a superhero showdown that could spell the end of Kick-Ass once and for all.

Awesome Review-O-Matic

The superhero movies that have recently come out are filled with your favs: Superman, Batman, Iron Man, Hulk. It's rare to have a comic book movie get made where you aren't too familiar with the characters. And I'll be honest, I had never heard of Kick Ass until a few months back. Having seen the trailer, it looked super duper cool and knowing it was written by Mark Millar (who also wrote Wanted), I knew it was going to be mega-tastic. (Don't judge Wanted by the Jolie flick, the graphic novel is far superior and completely different from the flick).

So brushing up on the knowledge, I decided to go in clean and not pick up the comic at all. I usually do read the comics most comic book movies are based on but I decided not to on this one. And I'm glad I didn't.

The movie stands alone and riddled me with a thousand bullets of glee. And to NOT know anything made it all the waaay awesomer. So lets get to the awesomeness.

Every movie has 3 acts. So I'm going to break it down that way.

Act 1: "Dave Lizewski meet Kick Ass"

The opening of Kick-Ass is in the trailer. And every time I watch it, I LOL. Act I is the origin of Kick Ass and it starts with the question. Why hasn't someone tried to be a real life superhero? That's what Dave Lizewski decides to do. The brilliance of Kick Ass is that it slightly parodies the Spiderman origin story.

We have the same NYC setting, a nerdy loner, a crush on the hot girl, dorky friends and an arch enemy whose filthy rich. But if Spiderman is all that is right, Kick Ass is all that is bizarro. Dave doesn't have special powers and thus why the line I started this review echoes loudly.

Soon, Kick Ass is an Internet sensation racking up YouTube views and MySpace friends (what no Facebook?). Dave is enjoying his alter ego and who wouldn't enjoy being a full fledged superhero, hooking up with the hottie and being popular.

Top 3 Scenes of Act 1
  • Kick Ass gets his ass kicked
  • Kick Ass gets his ass kicked again but kicks ass himself
  • Kick Ass becomes a phenomenon
Act 2: "Kick Ass meet Big Daddy and Hit Girl"

Our introduction to these two is best illustrated through this awesome clip below.




Damon Macready was once a supercop (his back story is told in an animated comic panel) and with his daughter Mindy are the living parody of Batman and Robin. I'd like to say they are BETTER than that ambiguous gay duo. As Big Daddy and Hit Girl, they are a lethal combination and every scene they're in is magic. Nic Cage plays the crazy, vigilante father so perfectly, it's like he was born to play Big Daddy.

But Chloe Moretz as Mindy aka Hit Girl is so tweeny cute, when she goes into action against a street gang whose got Kick Ass on the ropes, it's violent gory fun. The comic doesn't spare you the gruesomeness of annihilating the criminal underground and the movie is slickly splatterific as advertised. Head wounds, gunshots and some slice and dice by our minuscule misfit are violent poetry.

And she's waaaaaay Buffy funny too replying to Kick Ass in one scene.

Dave Lizewski: How do I get a hold of you?
Hit Girl: [sarcastically] Just contact the mayor, he has a special signal that shines in the sky! It's in the shape of a giant cock

Top 3 Scenes of Act 2
  • That scene above
  • Hit Girl goes Hit Girl (little tween girls saying cunt is soooooo cute)
  • Introduction of Red Mist (played by McLovin guy from SuperBad...that guy is awesome!)

Act 3: "Kick Ass, Big Daddy and Hit Girl meet Red Mist and Frank D'Amico"

So whose the big bad in this movie? Well we get a NYC kingpin (diet version) named Frank D'Amico. Seems Big Daddy has a vendetta against D'Amico and he's cleaning up D'Amico henchman faster than you can say cunt. Soon Kick Ass is not alone in the superhero business. Red Mist aka Chris D'Amico aka McLovin join Kick Ass in his crusade but not everything is as it seems.

Our heroes face endless peril, one of them goes down and all hell breaks loose. It's an ending that kicks so much ass, my ass still hurts. The movie balances ha ha's and visual comedy but then smashes you with the over the top action you crave in any comic you'd read. The ending is satisfying in that ice cream sundae sorta way. After the movie had ended, I felt the urge to run to my comic book store and pick it up. OK, I think I'm done comic orgasming.

Top 3 Scenes of Act 3
  • Hit Girl to the rescue!
  • Hit Girl infiltrates D'Amico HQs
  • The final battle
Matthew Vaughn (who directed Stardust and financed this movie by himself and a few others) balances Millar's story, picks a few choice panels from JrJr. and amplifies Chloe Moretz's performance to the max. It works on so many levels: comedy, action and comic genius.

This is the best movie of 2010 so far, I can't see anything being better. When you watch Kick Ass it reveals the not so secret of comics these days. There are comics for adults that flip upside down the conventional comic book narrative.

Garth Ennis and Frank Miller you've seen. Hell if people actually understood what Alan Moore and Dave Gibson did in Watchmen, they'd understand how awesome a movie and comic it is and how it too rewrote the standard comic book formula.

Kick-Ass is simply perfection in what a comic book movie is suppose to be. It politely mocks the genre but knows what the audience came to see. Witty humor, POW! BAM! action and a new band of heroes that you won't ever forget. Kick-Ass sits on the throne of comic book movie royalty daring anybody to take away it's crown. Hit Girl says it best.

"OK cunts, let's see what you can do now"

Gore-ipedia

Gunshot trauma
Slice and Dice
Lots of ass kicking
Massive amounts of violence

WTF moment

Hit Girl's one girl army rescue operation

The Jaded Viewer's Final Prognosis

Kick-Ass comes out on April 16th. I can keep telling you how awesome it is but you'll have to see it for yourself. Seeing a 13 yr old girl kill without mercy, spew fuck and cunt in a few lines and use a hit-arang is so satisfying you may actually see this more than once.

As promised, below is some video of the NYC premiere. If you need some Kick-Ass info, UGO has a few cool articles that include a Kick-Ass 101, Top Groups to be Offended by Kick-Ass, Mark Millar bio and the Most Kick Ass Panels in Kick-Ass.

Finally, here is footage of the NYC premiere of Kick-Ass with a Q&A with Millar and Romita Jr.





No doubt it gets 4 spinkicks. It's your responsibility to see this movie when it comes out on April 16th. That's your power.

Rating:


The Trailer


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Thursday, March 18, 2010

Saturday Nightmares Expo 2010 (March 19-21)

If you're still itching after attending Monster Mania and need another horror fix, another great horror expo is taking place in Jersey City, New Jersey this weekend. Saturday Nightmares is having a Dead trilogy reunion of sorts with George A. Romero in attendance. Other guests include your Dead trilogy alum:

Ken Foree (Dawn)
Scott Renieger (Dawn)
David Emge (Dawn)
Gaylen Ross (Dawn)
Tom Pilato (Day)

and of course the one and only Tom Savini.

Also in attendance is the great Adrienne Barbeau who stars in the short I introduced to you all called Alice Jacobs is Dead directed by Alex Horwitz (who will also be in attendance). The short will also be screened as well.

As you know I raved about how awesome Alice Jacobs is and this is your chance to see it!

They are also screening all the Dead movies and I'm sure George is going to show some Survival footage. I'm going to try to go but I urge you to head over there as well.

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Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Last Call (The First Interactive horror movie in theaters...wait say what?)


Well you probably all heard about this little gimmicky horror movie from the coverage last week. If you didn't head over to Dread Central or Horror Squad for more info.

Basically 13th Street Films (a company based out of Germany) is promoting the first interactive horror film where a theater-goer gets a call from the protagonist and he or she helps the final girl make decisions in the movie in real time.

Read this:

The first interactive horror movie in the world where the audience is able to communicate with the protagonist. A film controlled by a member of the audience, thus blurring the boundaries between game and film. Language recognition software transforms the participant's answers via mobile phone into specific instructions. A specially developed software then processes these commands and launches an appropriate follow-up scene.

The dialogue between the movie's main actress and an audience member leads to a different film - and outcome - every time: sometimes with a happy end, sometimes with a more gruesome one. To participate in the adventure, audience members submit their mobile phone numbers to a speed dial code when they buy their tickets.

The moment the female protagonist takes out her phone to call someone who might be able to help her, the film's controlling software contacts one of the submitted mobile phone numbers. Once the viewer picks up, he hears the actress's voice - who tells him she would be lost without him. He has to help her escape by choosing a path through the old, rundown sanatorium.

Furthermore, he also decides whether she should help other victims to flee the scene - and every single choice shapes her fate: it's a matter of life and death.

OK, got all that? Now check out the trailer.




Hmmmm interesting in that "this is sooo gonna be abused" sorta way. It's not the first to do a choose your own adventure sorta thing. Interactive DVDs have been out for a while...hell even porn DVDs have "various interactivity". This prompts a few questions.

Sure, I think Germans would follow the instructions to the tee. Maybe even the Brits, Aussies and Canadians too would participate in an orderly way. But give an American the option to fuck up would be victim in a horror movie and it can only turn out completely fucked up. I think it would turn out to be a disaster where we'd get some jabroni mess up the movie for everybody else. We'd get exchanges like this.

Final Girl: "Go up or down?"
American jabroni phone counterpart: "Take off your top and let me see your titties"

Final Girl:
"Help or flee"
American jabroni phone counterpart: "Fuck him, get the fuck out of their girl and run for your life! Get me 6 pack of Bud if you can."

See? We can't get anything nice. It would turn into a complete mockery. Imagine the douchebag asshole getting chosen or Ms. Joanna Moviegoer making all the wrong decisions. You'd get tons of people yelling at you what to do. It would be mad chaos I tell you. People running around in the theater and the worst thing that would come out of this would be......

Everybody's phone would turned on during the movie!!!!

Can you imagine?

OK maybe I'm being a little down on us Americans but you know how it is. Even during a regular horror movie, people be yelling shit at the screen. And what happens if your suggestions after the movie in a bad way? Can it actually do that? Can you get her killed? Wouldn't you want that outcome instead of a daring escape?

So this leads to whether or not your advice actually affects the story in anyway. How many different outcomes could their be in such a interactive movie? Lots of questions on this.

You gotta love horror genre because it's a pure testing ground for all that is movie gimmicks. Like William Castle's "Percepto" vision where seats "tingled" while watching The Tingler or the advent of 3-D which turned that invention into mainstreaminess, horror is the testing ground of these ideas. Horror movies always embraced the 3D where the other genres (other than sci-fi) thought it had no real value.

So, horror minions....could this actually work? What do you all think?

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Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Splatter Disco (Review)

Splatter Disco

Splatter Disco (2007)

Directed by Richard Griffin

Richard Griffin and his Scorpio Film Releasing are relatively new to me. I had never heard of his films until I stumbled upon Nun of That (review here). So when I won a contest, I got some other Griffin films as well which included Creature from the Hillbilly Lagoon (not gonna review because I've been told if you don't have anything good to say....), Feeding the Masses (possible review upcoming) and this flick.

Well it was billed as "The First Slasher Musical" so I was hoping that I'd see some musical numbers in the same vain as Poultrygeist: Chicken of the Dead.

But not everything that's hyped can live up to the billing. Splatter Disco has some splatter, some disco and some big name stars (see Ken Foree and Debbie Rochon). It's got some decent acting, a slasher on the prowl and something I didn't expect. Furries!

Really furries?

Boring Plot-O-Matic

Kent Chubb thinks life couldn't possibly get any worse when the mayor, his sociopath mother (Lynn Lowry), and the city council threaten to close down his nightclub Den O' Iniquity for "acts of perversion." Enlisting the help of his father, Shank Chubb (Ken Foree), Kent and club regulars attempt to educate the town to the community service function of the club: providing a safe and welcoming environment for all the oddball local citizens. Little do they know a serial killer has begun to pick off club employees one by one, and now even Kent's acid-flashback-prone hippie attorney can't help them out of this bloody mess...or keep his eyes off Kent's gorgeous wife (Debbie Rochon).

Awesome Review-O-Matic

I'm not explaining plot. I mean it's right up there. As we meet all the deviant characters of the Den O Iniquity, they are pretty interesting. Lots of them are regulars in Griffin films (many of them are in Nun of That).

So who are these degenerates?
  1. Kent: Our Mr. Manager who wants to keep his club open so all these fetishers have a place to go
  2. His dad Shank: the owner of the club and a sick old dancing man
  3. Danni: A Furry who wants to be loved
  4. Echo: He repeats the last line you say and is secretly in love with Danni
  5. A bunch of other misfits
As the mayor's mom tries to shut down the club, the clubers start to get picked off one by one. Not much to report on splatter. There's a few oozey blood, but it's the PG-13 variety. But that's not important. There are about 5 musical numbers in Splatter Disco. The first one is the only one that I found actually fun. It has furries. So check it out below (not sure why the audio is unsynced)





The other musical numbers are a lawyer's lament, a few dance numbers, a Ken Foree number and something else that I don't remember. All of these are unremarkable. I had thought after the Furries number which I thought was hilarious we'd get more of the same. Well there's more gibberish and talk than singing in Splatter Disco.

Some of the dialogue is goofy Troma funny and it definitely has that feel. But the movie drags and there's serious gaps between musical scenes. Even the supposed twist only leads to a yaaaaaaaaaaaawn ending. Good performances overall by the cast and Sarah Nicklin is next door neighbor hot. Having seen this after Nun of That may have made me jaded but I had high expectations for this one.

I mean a slasher musical is a great concept. But unfortunately the music portion was a major fail. The worst part of the movie is now I got the damn Furries lyrics stuck in my head. Arghhhh!

I think these are the lyrics.

Chimpanzees in the zoo do it
Some courageous kangaroos do it
Let's do it, let's fall in love

???? do it
Bees do it
Even educated fleas do it
Let's do it, let's fall in love

I'm sure giraffes on the slide do it
Every hippotamus do it
Let's do it, let's fall in love.........


The other lyrics are pretty funny as it goes along.

Rating:
1/2

Check out the trailer



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Monday, March 15, 2010

Patrick Vive Ancora (Review)



Patrick Viva Ancora aka Patrick Still Lives

Directed by Mario Landi

The jaded viewer says: Unofficial sequel to the Australian made "Patrick". Has nothing to do with the original but is mildly entertaining in its own right. Plot revolves around some guests who come to a village resort to get some R&R. Unknown to them, telekinetic and ESP coma victim Patrick is on life support and has a rush towards sex and a little bit of the ultraviolence.

Using his power for evil, he makes a nurse strip for his viewing pleasure and in one of the most ingenious scenes in the entire movie he kills a woman by using a pole that is inserted up a woman's you know what and exits out of her mouth. I think the whole budget was spent on that gratuitous shot alone. Good stuff. Very Italian.

Rating:
1/2

The Trailer



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Shogun Assassin (Review)



Directed by Robert Houston, Kenji Misumi

Insano Steve says: Greatest samurai movie of all time, action-wise. Shogun-less samurai wanders countryside with infant boy in baby carriage in search of redemption, revenge and gore. Our samurai cuts and kills people with such efficiency, O.J. Simpson would be proud.

No samurai flick has as much splatter, not to mention the awesome killer cart the baby rides in and some of the coolest bad guys in any movie (3 badasses with pointy straw hats - there is no cooler accessory than a pointy straw hat). Shogun wants samurai dead and has hundreds of men, but samurai is a bad mother fucker with no conscience.

The benchmark to which all other swordplay movies will be judged.

HIGHEST RECOMMENDATION.

Rating:

The Trailer



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